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Posts Tagged ‘tomato sauce’

There’s something consistently comforting about homemade meatballs and tomato sauce for Sunday supper.  Maybe it’s the act of mixing and rolling the meat with your bare hands; an organic and ritualistic labor of love. Or, perhaps it’s just the sweet warm aroma of onion, garlic, fresh basil and tomatoes wafting off the stove.  Whatever it is, we couldn’t get enough of it this week when we tried Lidia Bastianich’s “polpette” with our spicy tomato-basil sauce. Instead of serving the dish over spaghetti, we baked a pan of polenta and then fried the squares in olive oil.  Light crunch on the outside with a soft, warm, heartiness on the inside — perfect with a dollop of tangy sauce.

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lasagna

I’ve sampled many a slice of lasagna in my day, from mom’s kitchen to fine Italian restaurants and church potlucks. The best have been moist and flavorful, not over-baked; firm and well-set; and made with incredibly fresh ingredients of cheese and sauce.

This rendition of the Italian classic (Bon Appetit, March 1999) ranks right up there with the best, and the homemade spicy tomato sauce is what makes it special. I love the rich poultry flavor from the sausage with chopped spinach and cracked red pepper. So tasty!  In the preparation, I substituted mozzarella cheese for the provolone and used fresh, homemade riccotta. I also added one more layer of lasagna noodles than was called for.  It was a hit all-around.

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